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Buy The Lion Tattoo 

Read a wonderful review of The Lion Tattoo by Anne Harding, written for The School Librarianthe journal of the School Library Association. They recommend the book for readers aged 12-16.

A stylish and self-assured young man decides he needs a tattoo, a tattoo of a lion. He presents the tattoo artist with a picture and she sets to work on his shoulder. But before long he’s in terrible pain. Asking her what she’s doing, he declares that his lion doesn’t need a tail. Soon he tells her that his lion doesn’t need a mane either.

A contemporary story, it might seem. A cautionary tale for our times. Only it’s not, not at all. It’s a simplified retelling of a fable by the poet, philosopher and Sufi mystic Rumi, written in the thirteenth century. In contrast, the very distinctive, stylised illustrations, by award-winning Iranian illustrator Afteh Maleaki Joo, as very much of now. And they provide an extra dimension to the story. It is the illustrator’s imagination that brings us the young man’s vision of the tail-less, mane-less lion, and her sense of humour that lies behind the telling last picture of that lion wit hits tattoo. This clever, witty picture book is for teenagers and adults. I fear though that its small size (just 150mm by 150mm) and purple cloth cover may reduce its potential appeal to young people.

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Posted in News & Reviews